Held on 11th July, 2018 at Bliz Banquet, New Delhi, the Meet-up was organised to address the issues faced by Exhibition Design &Fabrication agencies Organised by Anand Kharbanda from Siddhi Arts, over 40 agencies participated in the meet-up. A panel discussion was also held, which deliberated on the key issues being faced by the Exhibition agencies. It was unanimously agreed that there is a pertinent need to set up an association to voice the concerns of this fraternity.
“It was a collective feeling that their work is under-appreciated and that they are treated like mere workers rather than an integral part of the MICE industry”
Main highlights of the discussion were:
- Nitin Kumar, Director of Siddhi Arts said that there are many issues being faced by the agencies during exhibitions. The agency owners are all quite well to do but still they find themselves being ill-treated by the hall managers. He brought to notice that there are 5000+ Fabrication agencies working in the country with a turnover of 1-5 Crores per agency, yet, they are not treated with respect by the organizers. His own company has been in business for over 10 years now.
- Designs are the biggest assets of Designing Agencies, but they are not safe,” said Kulpreet Ahuja from Design Labs. Other than the problem of low status of agencies in the eyes of organizers he pointed out that the agencies also face problems amongst themselves. The problem of plagiarism. It happens often that one agency ends up using the design of another agency without permission, either due to a lack of knowledge or more often deliberately. The industry is cutting its own business due to such unethical short-cuts.
- Roop Arora from Quantum Design Studio brought forth the problem of delayed payments, and the clients making use of lack of unity among stall fabricators. He emphasized that the corporate exhibitors are quite smart and have started to bully the agencies, as there is cut throat competition in this space. He also supported the idea that the group should pool in its resources and create a legal cell and a HR Cell to deal with the pertinent problems.
- Ankur Sarin from Grey Quill pointed out the challenges faced by the agencies on-site during exhibitions with regard to basic facilities like drinking water, temporary electricity, vehicle entry and toilet facilities. The organisers do not cooperate and are reluctant to provide these basic facilities during set up days of exhibitions, causing a lot of discomfort to the agencies and their staff.
- Varun who has been in this space for over 20 years, said that the agencies must be seen as partners and should be given due importance for their work. They must be treated with respect at the exhibitions.